Government Solutions Blog | Fisher & Phillips LLP
News, commentary and legal updates from Fisher & Phillips attorneys who
specialize in government relations.

States & Municipalities – The Engines That Are Driving Legislative Activity

April 18, 2016 04:36
by Gregory D. Hanscom
While many are mesmerized by the presidential primaries and remain frustrated by gridlock in Congress, states and municipalities are aggressively tackling social and economic issues that impact employers. The states of California and New York recently enacted legislation that will gradually raise the minimum wage in each state to either $12.50 or $15 an hour. In California the statewide minimum wage will, for most employers, incrementally rise each year until it reaches $15 an hour on January ...


Governor Wolf Signs Executive Orders Protecting LGBT State Employees and Contractors from Discrimination

April 12, 2016 00:09
by Chad Flores
Pennsylvania government employees and contractors are now protected from discrimination based on their sexual orientation, gender expression, and gender identity. On April 7, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed a pair of executive orders prohibiting discrimination against individuals based on their sexual orientation, gender expression, or gender identity. The pair of orders come on the heels of a recent slate of controversial so-called “religious freedom” laws in states such as North Ca...


Equal Pay for Equal Work – Recent Proposals at the EEOC and in Pennsylvania

March 28, 2016 00:11
by Lauren Fuiman Cell
The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 (the “Act”) was signed into law on January 29, 2009. In short, the Act states that the 180-day statute of limitations for filing a lawsuit regarding pay discrimination resets with each new paycheck affected by that discriminatory action. Since the Act’s inception, there have been efforts made to address pay discrimination in the workplace. To that end, employers should be aware of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’...

Oregon's Minimum Wage Will Increase This July - And Each Year Thereafter For The Next Six Years

February 19, 2016 03:55
by Rich Meneghello
In a first-of-its-kind development, the Oregon legislature passed and the Governor will sign into law a minimum wage hike law that will go into effect July 1, 2016. Under the new law, the rates will steadily increase through 2023, eventually giving Oregon the highest minimum wage rates in the nation. For the first time in Oregon history, employers will pay different minimum wage rates depending on the part of the state in which they are located, with employers in Portland’s Urban Growth B...


The DOL Remains Unpersuaded - New "Persuader" Rule is Coming Soon

December 10, 2015 02:30
by Gregory D. Hanscom
The anxiety of employers and labor attorneys only worsened this week when the Department of Labor took another step towards finalizing and publishing the much anticipated changes to the so-called “persuader” rule. On Monday, the DOL’s Office of Labor-Management Standards submitted a proposed final rule to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the final step before a rule may be published. The DOL has signaled that it intends to publish the final rule by March 2016, but s...



California Employers Will Face Significant New Equal Pay Law

October 6, 2015 00:16
by James J. McDonald Jr.
California employers will soon be subject to a new equal pay law that will create a much stricter standard for gender pay equity. Passed by the state legislature with broad bipartisan support and signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown on October 6, 2015, this new law is considered the most aggressive equal pay law in the nation. California employers will want to begin preparing immediately for its impact. For more details, please read our Legal Alert.

Equal Pay | California

New Jersey Minimum Wage Will Hold Steady In 2016

October 1, 2015 03:50
by Gregg Salka
New Jersey’s minimum wage will remain at $8.38 per hour for 2016, the state government recently announced. As we reported on January 2, 2015, New Jersey’s constitution requires that the state minimum wage increase annually (and proportionally) if there is an increase of the consumer price index for all urban wage earners and clerical workers (CPI-W) for the prior year. The New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Division of Economic and Demographic Research (DOL) r...

Minimum Wage | New Jersey

Tacoma's New Paid Sick Leave Ordinance: What Employers Need to Know

September 28, 2015 07:18
by Rochelle Nelson
Tacoma has now joined Seattle as the third city in Washington State to mandate paid sick leave for employees (certain hospitality and transportation workers employees in SeaTac also receive this benefit). The new law will go into effect February 1, 2016. Tacoma has just issued its rules interpreting this law, making this the best time for employers to take steps to comply. Employers should note that Tacoma’s law differs from Seattle’s law in many aspects, and should thus not assume ...

Paid Sick-Leave

Firm Critiques USDOL's Exemption Initiative

September 10, 2015 07:02
by Joseph W. Ambash
Last Thursday, Fisher & Phillips filed its own extensive comments on the U.S. Labor Department's proposals and requests relating to the federal Fair Labor Standards Act's Section 13(a)(1) exemptions. The firm's presentation expresses opposition to USDOL's undertaking in largely every respect. The comments also note that USDOL has in most cases offered no specific regulatory language for public review, including as to any revisions in the duties-related exemption requirements. We have agai...

You’re Not the Boss of Me – The NLRB May Disagree

August 28, 2015 02:58
by Gregory D. Hanscom
With a few key strokes, the NLRB yesterday, in a 3-2 decision down party lines, wiped away years of precedent and re-wrote, or, in its words “refined,” the definition of a joint employer. In a ruling that will, if upheld through inevitable appeals, significantly impact the franchise, outsourcing and many other industries, the NLRB decided a California company, Browning-Ferris Industries, was a joint employer of workers hired by a staffing firm. In reaching this conclusion, the NLRB j...


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